PTAD verifies NICON, NDA, others for retiree benefits
After 13 years of privatisation of Nicon Insurance Corporation, and Nigeria Reisurance Corporation, respite came the way of former employees of the two firms to be verified and start payment process of their retirement benefits.
The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD), in the Lagos centre commenced verification of pensioners of NICON, Nigeria Re, Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA Civilians,) New Nigeria Newspapers, and a host of others, that had long been side-lined from pension benefits.
The verification exercise was held in Abuja, Kaduna, and Lagos simultaneously. PTAD Executive Secretary, Sharon Ikeazor, said it would last for six days. As early as 8.30a.m., anxious pensioners thronged the Maitama headquarters of PTAD for the verification, which involved data capturing and verification of documents.
According retirees, who spoke to The Guardian at the centre in Lagos, for the first time, retirees were having it very smoothly, adding that the procedure was completely different from that of the past where pensioners were treated with disdain.
Awa Nmaju, a former staff of NICON Insurance and Chairman, Pensioners Pressure Group, said they have not received pension in the last 12 years.
“Our pension has not been paid in the last 12 years and we have been struggling to see that we get paid. Eventually PTAD has done a great job, arranging this verification exercise for us, a journey that started in 2005 till now.
“It’s not a small journey, but we are relieved as soon as our case was transferred to PTAD, a lot of attention has been given to it, especially with the coming on board of the new Executive Secretary of PTAD, she has done a great job for us,” Nmaju said.
Continuing, he said: “I am very much excited. In fact my happiest day was on the 3rd of March, when I was told that the minister has approved for us to be pensionable.”
The pensioner recalled that since the privatisation of the former corporation and workers paid off, he had been finding it difficult to survive; lamenting that what they were paid was not commiserate with the years they put into service.
However, he said: “Since we have been put under pension, we will start receiving monthly stipend, though it may not be as we expected it, though they will pay us arrears.”
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